• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.

Announcement

Collapse

Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Exercised to help 5 year old get her heels down?

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Exercised to help 5 year old get her heels down?

    Anyone have any "fun" suggestions? My 5 year old daughter just got back from a week of horse camp. Though the camp was great for her confidence, getting her pony to trot around cones, over bridges, etc. Her equitation has a lot to be desired right now. She spent the week with her foot "home" in the stirrup. Very dangerous and I need some suggestions to help her sink her heel down without just saying...push your heel down, over and over. Any suggestions?
    Maria Hayes-Frosty Oak Stables
    Home to All Eyez On Me, 1998 16.2 Cleveland Bay Sporthorse Stallion
    & FrostyOak Hampton 2008 Pure Cleveland Bay Colt
    www.frostyoaks.com

  • #2
    I had a little kidlet that I told to "point your toes to your nose"... and it worked. I would remind her in the beginning, but she could do it for her whole lunge lesson (only 15-20 minutes, but still)

    Comment


    • #3
      Mandatory two-point at the beginning of every ride, and every time her heel comes up. Not fun, but good discipline and muscle-memory training. If she's going to ride properly and safely, it can't be all about "fun."

      Comment


      • #4
        Something I've noticed in the mother-daughter dynamic is that nagging about heels down is less helpful than saying, "Are your toes up?"

        She always immediately fixes it, and says, "Yes!" and we're both happy.

        I have taught many young riders, but I've found I have to be different with my own daughter, because she takes critical comments from me very personally. When I teach her, I try to set her up with exercises and supervise her to keep her safe, but otherwise arrange so that she sees the problems/corrections herself. So I'll set up a course of poles, tell her where to go, and she makes it or she doesn't. I can make suggestions on how to make it better ("Try looking for your pole sooner") without it being critical.

        There is a new coaching technique called Tagging that I think is very promising. I haven't tried it with my daughter yet, but I plan to.

        Since the joy associated with success should not be diminished by identifying deficiencies, TAG teachers never say, "Good job, but you didn't point your foot." Instead, the TAG teacher focuses on a single element of a step or one technical aspect, called a "tag point." For example, a tag point could be the execution of a pique arabesque with straight knees. When the dancer executes it correctly, the teacher rewards the student with a "tag," the click sound produced by the small handheld device. The tag becomes a binary message: a tag means yes, absence of a tag means no. The brain does not have to process corrections or interpret emotions while the body is trying to perform complicated movements. Instead, the TAG-trained dancer learns to react to this data with lightning speed while building muscle memory and confidence. Technical skills are developed one tag point at a time, and fewer repetitions are needed because the approach is so targeted and specific.
        The results have been astounding. How many times have you told your dancers to keep their heels down in demi plie? With a group of twenty-five 7- to 9-year olds, each child was able to master the skill after one tag session. Subsequent classes focusing on everything from grand jete's to battements met with similar success.
        The TAG method teaches the teacher as much as it teaches the dancer because it requires instructors to dissect and explain every step in advance in order to select an appropriate tag point. It also facilitates discussion between dancers and teachers when they collectively seek to determine the one movement at the core of a port de bras, shuffle step, straddle leap, etc.

        Tagging works where traditional teaching can fail because the latter may often be implicitly negative. When you point out an error, you are essentially reinforcing it, and students are sometimes unable to see corrections as compliments, no matter how often you tell them that a correction means a teacher cares about their improvement. TAG teaching only reinforces correct dancing. The tag says, "Yes, do that again."

        I believe TAG is the single most positive change I have made in my business since opening my studio more than 20 years ago. My dancers are thriving physically and emotionally, my teachers are inspired and refreshed, parents are pleased that I have taken such a step to endure that our mission is about the whole child, not just winning a competition. It is possible to train dancers to be technically excellent without harming them emotionally, and this is an educational foundation so far removed from the studios of my youth that I all but cheer.
        If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket

        Comment


        • #5
          When I used to teach young ones, I would make them pretend to have "boulders" on the bottom of their heels. Boulders SO big they couldn't lift their heels up. Not the most FUN idea...but it helped a lot of them get a mental image and feel of how to get their heels down. I find if you remind them by saying different things, they get the message and generally try really hard. If you ask, "what's wrong with your equitation right now?" sometimes they fix it themselves, and you won't HAVE to say anything.

          Good luck!!

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by poltroon View Post
            There is a new coaching technique called Tagging that I think is very promising. I haven't tried it with my daughter yet, but I plan to.
            ...This is clicker training for humans
            My CANTER cutie Chip and IHSA shows!
            http://www.youtube.com/kheit86

            Comment


            • #7
              I found the "toes up" seemed to work better than "heels down" with my little ones too. Also, if she is clenching her toes unconsciously in her boot, then that's gonna cause her heel to come up as well. Ask her to spread her toes out and wiggle them to help her relax her foot. Kidlets sometimes have a different way of learning than the older ones.
              Crayola posse~ orange yellow, official pilot
              Proud owner of "High Flight" & "Shorty"

              Comment


              • #8
                She's 5. Aside from a five year old attention span, there is not a whole lot of specific body control at this age (have you ever watched kidlet ballet?).

                If she is riding with a safety stirrup, with a boot with a heel, on a steady eady pony, wearing a helmet, then I wouldn't worry about having her foot home in the stirrup. Plus, from the little I have read about eventing, isn't having the stirrup home actually somewhat safer? Let her have fun and learn to ride.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by To the MAX View Post
                  ...This is clicker training for humans
                  My thought exactly...

                  To the OP: Make peanut ride in two point. For like a year.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    OP - I feel your pain. DD has tight calf muscles (as does her mom) and not a lot of strength in her legs. She has a hard time with her heels, too.

                    I wish I had some helpful suggestions, but I'm glad to read others' suggestions. I think I'll try the toes up thing. Does she have a trainer other than you? I find myself trying to NOT pick at her when we're not lessoning.

                    Clicker training my kid - not so much.
                    A proud friend of bar.ka.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Dissenting opinion............

                      1. I would ask why the instructor had her "home" and what that is, is variable.....

                      2. "Home" It is not bad nor dangerous and mechanically makes her foot and lower leg more stable because it shortens the lever arm of the foot making it easier for the calf to function.

                      3. Her body has alot of changes to go through let them go through them naturally.

                      And of course my favorite....

                      Heels down is bad. It mechanically disrupts the normal mechanism the body uses to keep its center of mass over its base of support that is the feet.

                      Just my opinions of course....

                      Regards,
                      Medical Mike
                      equestrian medical researcher
                      www.fitfocusedforward.us

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        if you have to do "equitation" work with a five year old, have her do fun work on the ground. try walking down the barn aisle and back with your toes off the floor and only on your heels.

                        if you are worried about her riding "home" rubber band a block to the arch of her paddock boots to extend the heel to the ball of her foot.

                        for visualization i used to say to have "fred flintstone heels" ( remebmer how he used to stop the car) but now the kids say fred WHO?

                        muscle memory is key.
                        Last edited by fair judy; Jul. 1, 2009, 08:13 PM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          My DD is also 5 and we do at LEAST 15 min of two point on the lunge without hands ( arms out like and airplane) everyday!! she likes it ( weird kid) and her heels are almost vertical and her leg is stretched down nice and long around ponies body!
                          We are also working on keeping heels down while we lay on ponies neck and touch our toes, ponies ears and tail. I am trying to "seperate" her body parts, at 5 they are all still "joined together" it is now time to learn to work independently, not an easy concept for a 5 yr old , kind of like the kidde ballet analogy above LOL!!!!
                          Kim
                          If you are lucky enough to ride, you are lucky enough.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by medical mike View Post
                            1. I would ask why the instructor had her "home" and what that is, is variable.....

                            2. "Home" It is not bad nor dangerous and mechanically makes her foot and lower leg more stable because it shortens the lever arm of the foot making it easier for the calf to function.

                            3. Her body has alot of changes to go through let them go through them naturally.

                            And of course my favorite....

                            Heels down is bad. It mechanically disrupts the normal mechanism the body uses to keep its center of mass over its base of support that is the feet.

                            Just my opinions of course....

                            Regards,
                            Medical Mike
                            equestrian medical researcher
                            www.fitfocusedforward.us
                            Mike, you frequently chime in to various threads with your "heels down is bad" opinion so that you can advertise your services in your signature line, but your opinion seem divorced from riding. Riding a horse is different from standing flat on the ground. In motion on a horse, the body needs shock absorption in all of its joints, which is why we close the hip angle, bend the knee, and flex the ankle.

                            The problems with riding "home" is 1) that it poses the risk that the stirrup will slide all the way back and the foot will get caught in the stirrup, which would cause an unseated rider to be dragged feet-up and head-down from the saddle; and 2) that it causes the rider's whole foot and leg to brace against the stirrup instead of resting on it. Riders need to flex their ankles as much as horses need to flex their pasterns/ankles/fetlocks. Especially when landing from a jump. You would have us all riding around like steeplechasers, perched upon the horse, bracing with the stirrup home for "security," and wearing out our backs for lack of shock absorption.

                            I doubt that the 5-year old's instructor told her to ride with her stirrups home -- more likely it was just overlooked and so the rider formed a bad habit.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Dixon View Post
                              Mike, you frequently chime in to various threads with your "heels down is bad" opinion so that you can advertise your services in your signature line, but your opinion seem divorced from riding. Riding a horse is different from standing flat on the ground. In motion on a horse, the body needs shock absorption in all of its joints, which is why we close the hip angle, bend the knee, and flex the ankle.

                              The problems with riding "home" is 1) that it poses the risk that the stirrup will slide all the way back and the foot will get caught in the stirrup, which would cause an unseated rider to be dragged feet-up and head-down from the saddle; and 2) that it causes the rider's whole foot and leg to brace against the stirrup instead of resting on it. Riders need to flex their ankles as much as horses need to flex their pasterns/ankles/fetlocks. Especially when landing from a jump. You would have us all riding around like steeplechasers, perched upon the horse, bracing with the stirrup home for "security," and wearing out our backs for lack of shock absorption.

                              I doubt that the 5-year old's instructor told her to ride with her stirrups home -- more likely it was just overlooked and so the rider formed a bad habit.
                              today as my daughter was posting without her reins, she would start to tip forward on her toes each time she did she had to reach down and "balance" on her hands, as I pointed this out and told her to sink her weight into her heels, as she did this she regained her balance, I have NO idea how to ride without that balance, so the NO heels down thing will never fly with me!!
                              Kim
                              If you are lucky enough to ride, you are lucky enough.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Have her bounce on the edge of a step at home for a minute or two each day. Good for balance, stretching the Achilles, and getting an idea of how it's supposed to feel.
                                I realize that I'm generalizing here, but as is often the case when I generalize, I don't care. ~ Dave Barry

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Simon Says - but touching the corresponding body part only counts if the leg stays still and the heel stays down. All of the moving and twisting side to side (simon says look left, simon says look at your ponies tail) will help her start learning to use her parts independently.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Come Shine View Post
                                    She's 5. Aside from a five year old attention span, there is not a whole lot of specific body control at this age (have you ever watched kidlet ballet?).
                                    I think it depends on the kid - I've seen some H/J and vaulting youngsters who have fantastic coordination and proprioception! Every kid matures at a slightly different rate, though, and girls tend to be ahead of boys in that respect at that age.
                                    Stay me with coffee, comfort me with chocolate, for I am sick of love.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by To the MAX View Post
                                      ...This is clicker training for humans
                                      Indeed. The gymnastics coach who started doing this had to rename it, because the parents said, "Everyone knows clicker training is for dogs."

                                      Karen Pryor's new book, Reaching the Animal Mind, talks about the science behind why a clicker would work better than just saying "good" or "yes." It turns out that the clicker, because it is a sound outside of the human voice, is a sound that bypasses the conscious part of your brain that processes language, and goes straight to the amygdalia - the 'lizard brain' part of you that can learn permanently off one experience that a stove is hot and NEVER TOUCH AGAIN. That's part of why the clicker can produce results very quickly.

                                      The other advantage of the clicker is that it can mark something very quickly that the person is having trouble perceiving. The example given is a handstand - the clicker can mark for the student exactly when she is vertical, something that is surprisingly hard to feel at first. The click says, "NOW!" and the neurology is set up to snapshot the whole system when that was RIGHT. This can work very well for positioning issues - like heels - or perhaps better with a weird habit like a rider who cocks their head a bit. The rider may not even know where straight is any more - and the clicker can help her find it.
                                      If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Hunter Mom View Post
                                        Clicker training my kid - not so much.
                                        I'm curious why you feel that way.

                                        A click is just communication - a very fast way of saying "Yes!" or "Good!". And the technique that goes with it, an agreement that we're only going to work on one tiny element at a time, is well established in all kinds of education.

                                        My criterion is: if the student is happy and learning, then the technique is valid and worth using. If it doesn't work for that student, walk away, no hard feelings, and try something different.

                                        Keep in mind, you're not going to throw her a fish or a sausage after each click.
                                        If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket

                                        Comment

                                        Working...
                                        X